Review. . . Lockstep by Karl Schroeder

Thank you Tor Books and Goodreads for sending me the ARC!


When seventeen-year-old Toby McGonigal finds himself lost in space, separated from his family, he expects his next drift into cold sleep to be his last. After all, the planet he’s orbiting is frozen and sunless, and the cities are dead. But when Toby wakes again, he’s surprised to discover a thriving planet, a strange and prosperous galaxy, and something stranger still—that he’s been asleep for 14,000 years.

Welcome to the Lockstep Empire, where civilization is kept alive by careful hibernation. Here cold sleeps can last decades and waking moments mere weeks. Its citizens survive for millennia, traveling asleep on long voyages between worlds. Not only is Lockstep the new center of the galaxy, but Toby is shocked to learn that the Empire is still ruled by its founding family: his own.

Toby’s brother Peter has become a terrible tyrant. Suspicious of the return of his long-lost brother, whose rightful inheritance also controls the lockstep hibernation cycles, Peter sees Toby as a threat to his regime. Now, with the help of a lockstep girl named Corva, Toby must survive the forces of this new Empire, outwit his siblings, and save human civilization.
Wow! Four flakes!

I do admit, I did not enjoy myself in the first 100 pages. I think it might be due to the fact that I am so used to reading YA and how they move so quickly that when I started this, I wasn't used to the pace of the book. 
The really incredible thing about this book is the world building. The world is so intricate and complex and it's really evident that a lot of planning went into the creation of the world.

Basically, the Lockstep Empire is the name of the 360/1 lockstep, the original, that Toby's family rules over. The ratio is how many months the people spend frozen to the months they spend awake. So essentially the Lockstep Empire is asleep for thirty years and awake for one month. In this way, they are able to travel to the many planets within the empire in a supposed night's sleep. The amount of resources used from the planet is also less, as there are robots that work during the time that the world is asleep to gather resources. 

Time passes slowly in the Lockstep Empire because they are asleep for so long and awake for a short amount of time. Though fourteen thousand years in real time have passed, only forty years have passed in the Lockstep Empire and thus, the original settlers of the Lockstep Empire have aged forty years. 

There's a lot of info dumping in the beginning of the book because the world is so complicated and intricate. However, because the Toby has been out of it for fourteen thousand years, the world needs to be explained to him as well. 

It got better halfway through the book because it is difficult to understand the world in the beginning and it takes some getting used to. Time is such a huge part of this book with the locksteps and the whole concept of it. 

Here are some quotes that I loved from this book! 
"The point is, time isn't the working out of a pre-designed destiny. Time is the possibility of surprise.

" The continent was a collision of lanterns, or a surf of glowing pearls hanging untroubled amid Wallop's storms. The cities' curving sides cradled the white of towers and the green of cultivated jungles that raveled them like verdigris staining a glass ball."

"Because it's ancient and ever-present at one and the same time. So amazingly, impossibly old, yet still here. Living in a lockstep is like hopping in a time machine and shooting back to the dawn of history while simultaneously being shot into the far future. It's that incredible age that everything has here - it's all preserved, the world as it was thousands of years ago." 
Anyways, Lockstep comes out on March 25th, 2014. Go out and pick it up if this interests you! 

Happy Reading, Y'all!
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  1. This looks and sounds amazing! I've always loved space books and this one sound a like a great one. I don't mind the massive info dumping in science fiction books because it's definitely needed :) I'm so adding this to my list. Thank you for the wonderful review

    1. Thank you for reading the review! <3 I think it will be a better read for me if/when I re-read it. :)


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